I got this idea from Science Experiments for Kids. It was a fun little project to do while we’ve all been trapped in the house for days in this cold freeze. It’s also a really simple experiment for preschoolers and one that they can keep as a craft!
Just as a note, we didn’t have enough oil to make the full lava lamp and we couldn’t make it to the store that day. Make sure to follow the directions on the amount of oil rather than measuring by the photo.
What you need:
- Vegetable Oil
- Plastic Bottle
- Food Coloring
Fill your plastic bottle up with 1/4th water and 3/4th oil, leaving a little room at the top. You can choose whatever color of Food Coloring you like and put 12 drops into the bottle. You’ll see how all the drops slowly push through the oil into the water at the bottom. My kids picked purple and it was pretty dark. I’d suggest using a brighter color like red so you can really see it!
Now comes the fun part! Break up the Alka-Seltzer tab into 4 pieces and drop a piece in; watch how the colored bubbles start to rise up through the oil just like a lava lamp!
To find out how it works and to teach your child the science behind the experiment, make sure to check out the experiment page on Science Experiments for Kids. We had also tried their Lemon Fizzy Drink and I do NOT recommend drinking it. It was so bad! However, it was really awesome seeing how the lemon water exploded in fizz from the baking soda!
And just in case you don’t have Alka-Seltzer on hand, it is really neat to make the bottle and then slowly shift the oil and water together. It may not fizz up through the oil, but it does make colored bubbles that float to the top and my tot liked that just as much. I hope you have fun making your Bottle Lava Lamp!